Junior Golf: Patience And Safety

In this Friday Flop Shot we’re looking at 2 words that are critical to our junior golfer’s enjoyment of this wonderful game, but we don’t often hear very much about them.image

Yesterday’s 1st round of the U.S.Open provided the pros with multiple opportunities to refamiliarize themselves with these words, patience and safety. Patience is a great attribute for all aspects of life and sports is included. When does your son need to be patient? There are several scenarios common to golf tournaments. Let’s look at 1. (photo offcoursegolf.com)

S3 played some junior events on a course here in San Antonio that had a tough par 3 with heavy woods on both sides of the fairway and around the green. So what, you say? Well it was common to have 3 or 4 groups stacked up on this tee box because so many kids were searching everywhere for balls plus par 3’s are notorious for getting backed up in certain situations and this is 1 of them. So your son must find his best way to deal with long delays. We always encouraged S3 to relax, hydrate and eat a few bites while staying somewhat in the reality that he was still playing in a golf tournament. And he was to loosen up after sitting around for sometimes 30 minutes. It doesn’t take long for your youngster’s muscles to stiffen up.

Patience is tough even for the pros. Once they get in their game groove they like to keep it going, particularly if they are playing well. And your son likely feels the same way. Stretching and warming up again, after a delay, are important for your son to resume play and to play well.

So yesterday was a tough day at Oakmont as there were 3 rain delays. Dangerous storms with lightning kept forming and passing through. Even though pros are pros and they are used to these things, they are still an additional mental and physical test. Lightning is serious and golfers, spectators and staff need to quickly get to shelter. Safety is #1 and Paul Azinger and Brad Faxon strongly stressed this point a lot during the Fox TV coverage. Please make your son aware that lightning is his enemy on the golf course and instruct him on proper ways to keep himself safe. (pgatour.com)img_0369

Combining patience and safety would be when the pros got off the course, because of lightning in the area, after marking their ball and then once the storm had passed, maybe after as much as a couple of hours, they went back out to resume play. Both announcers agreed that the last shot they wanted upon resuming play was a 5-foot putt. A full swing shot was much preferred, just to release some of the pent up anxiety and get back in their groove. So you see how the anxiety level is increased or decreased by the 1st shot the pro is facing after a delay, wow!

See you on #1 tee looking patient and no storms around… Sam

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